Your Musical Child

Your Musical Child Webinar

It’s not often that I’m listed in the same sentence as Laurie Berkner, Dan Zanes, Charity Kahn, Music Together, and many other household names in the field of children’s music and education. So I’m taking this opportunity to shout from the rooftops about this free speaker series, for which that IS the case.

I’m assuming that since you’re reading this, you understand the importance of music, and that learning and music go hand in hand. It is also known that the biggest predictor of long­term life success and happiness is not “IQ” but actually “EQ” — emotional intelligence. So what does music have to do with emotional intelligence?


5,000 Facebook Fans Giveaway

5K Facebook Fans Giveaway

A month or so ago, Katey and I realized that we were just a little over 100 Facebook fans away from reaching the 5,000 mark. Of course, we couldn’t let that milestone go by without celebrating, and what better way to celebrate than with a BIG giveaway?!

We reached out to Janet Stephens, the creator of Bear Paw Creek movement props, and she very generously offered up a package of our favorite products for our lucky winner. The package includes:


#AMTA15: Conference Recap (With Pictures!)

Music Therapy Round Table Booth at Conference

Another year, another wonderful national conference under my belt. I can’t believe this was my 7th — it seems like just yesterday I was a new professional attending #AMTA09 in San Diego.

This was my second time attending conference with a baby in tow, and I was extremely fortunate to have my mom with me as well to help. I did make sure that Mia made at least a few appearances, since there was a long list of music therapists waiting to hold her :)

Music Therapists & Mia

The Music Therapy Round Table hosted a booth in the exhibit hall as usual, and we were lucky to have wonderful neighbors once again (Metro Music Therapy, Music Therapy E-Books, and Music Therapy Book Club). I spent quite a bit of time manning our booth, which meant I got to connect with lots of fellow professionals, interns and students.

Music Therapy Connections Owners at Conference

Katey and I attended the Music Therapy Business Owners meeting on Friday and were inspired by all the amazing things happening in private practice. We all introduced ourselves and shared our biggest successes and challenges this year as business owners. It’s awesome to be a part of a community filled with like-minded, supportive colleagues.

Maria Carron Cavanagh

Another highlight was running into my former internship director, Maria Carron Cavanagh. I hadn’t seen her since completing my internship at Midwest Music Therapy Services in May 2007, so we were able to catch up and I told her how influential she was in my decision to start a private practice.

I also ran into quite a few of the music therapists I’ve interviewed and gotten to know through my podcast, Guitars and Granola Bars. I feel like I know them so well after hearing their stories, so it was really nice getting to meet them face-to-face. Jennifer Whitlow, who was featured in Episode 41, also had her daughter with her!

Babies at Music Therapy Conference

I always look forward to recording our live episode of the MTRT podcast right at our booth in the exhibit hall, which we did on Saturday morning. We also drew winners of our raffle and shared the results of our fun little survey.

Music Therapy Round Table at Conference

This was my shortest conference experience yet, since I didn’t arrive until Thursday afternoon and then left on Saturday. I’m looking forward to next year when I’m neither pregnant nor will I have a child with me; it will be the first time in 4 years I can fully immerse myself without fighting morning sickness or taking breaks to feed the baby.

Mia on a Roadtrip

Happy baby getting ready to hit the road! This was Mia’s first roadtrip, and overall, she did wonderfully in the car. Towards the end, we were both anxious to get home to Zach and Parker (who had a great time during their “boys weekend” together).

See you at #AMTA16 in Sandusky, Ohio!

Red Ribbon Official

MTC Ribbon Cutting

Music Therapy Connections has been in business for over 8 years now, but never have I felt more official than the moment my partner Katey and I cut a red ribbon in front of our building with giant scissors.

We recently joined the Springfield Chamber of Commerce, and one of the perks of membership is a ribbon-cutting ceremony, which we held this past Friday. We invited members of the Chamber, our staff, friends and family to join in the ceremony, and then held an open house for families in the community.

Our facility has come a long way since we opened the doors at the end of August, but we’re not done. We are continuing to raise money for our recording studio and constantly coming up with ways of enhancing  our space. The feedback we receive from everyone who comes in has been overwhelmingly positive — the BEST thing to hear is how cheerful and inviting it is. That’s exactly what we were going for :)

If you live in the Springfield area and haven’t been by for a visit, please feel free by do so. Also, we still have a few openings for new voice, piano and guitar students as well as our next session of classes for children of all ages. All of the information is available on our website.

World Breastfeeding Week

World Breastfeeding Week

This is the 3rd consecutive year I’ve celebrated World Breastfeeding Week by — wait for it — breastfeeding. We’ve attended the annual World Breastfeeding Week Zoo Walk, hosted by the West Central Illinois Breastfeeding Taskforce, each year since 2012, when I started providing musical entertainment during the event.

In 2013, I was just a couple months in to motherhood and still working to get the hang of nursing Parker. He was a huge supporter of breastfeeding from the start, as you can see ;)

World Breastfeeding Week

In 2014, he was down to nursing just in the morning and at bedtime, but neither of us were quite ready to give it up altogether. (He self-weaned a little over a month later, literally on the day I found out I was pregnant.)

World Breastfeeding Week

And this year, I’m right back at the beginning with Mia, who is just 10 weeks old. Nursing her has been so much easier than it was with Parker, which I attribute to knowing what I’m doing this time around and feeling much more confident.

World Breastfeeding Week

We always have a great time getting together with friends I’ve met through the mom & baby group at St. John’s Hospital, and this year was especially fun now that Parker is old enough to really enjoy the zoo.

I’m hoping that I can celebrate this week next year by continuing to breastfeed at least until then, if not longer. As exhausting and consuming as it can be at times, there is nothing better than having this girl snuggled up to me.